by Patti Muzny
Late March, Early April 2015
When I’m attempting to enjoy peace and quiet at our cabin at Byars, OK, there is inevitably something or someone who will shatter my solitude with various and assorted interruptions. Usually it’s my hubby or son with a chain saw, leaf blower or tractor. Sometimes it’s something really cool.
On March 29th, I was curled up on the screen porch reading and my guys were away from the cabin and the “local” birds were embracing spring with song.
Then I heard something walking beside the cabin through the crunchy leaves, while making a soft one-note “drip” noise that sounded a little like the sound my cell phone makes when I press a key. It took me a minute to associate the “drip” sound with the scratching.
I very slowly stood up and carefully looked down to see a pair of hen turkeys scratching and strolling toward the back of the cabin, where we have the bird feeder. I then crept into the cabin and looked out the back window. The hens were not that skittish and allowed me to watch as they scratched around the feeder before they heard Sam coming down from the barn.
They simply walked up the trail and disappeared into the woods. Quite the unexpected treat!
At our OKC home on April 6th, somewhere a little after 9:00 PM, I opened the patio door and heard our Great Horned Owls calling from our neighbor’s large oak tree beside our house. I walked out to the edge and looked up just as Owl #2 joined Owl #1 for an early night serenade. They hooted together as a duet; they hooted separately, and they hooted together. I must have stood there 3-4 minutes and enjoyed their conversations very much. Brian had said he heard the calls of fledglings earlier in the week. We still have no idea where they nested, but since we’ve seen no nest in any trees nearby, they may have nested in one of the neighbors’ outbuildings.
Before dawn every morning I hear our Cardinal singing near the bathroom window. Our Eastern Bluebirds did not stick around and their house was appropriated by English Sparrows. Our Martins were rather tardy in our back yard this year and we still don’t have them every day, but a couple of pairs have at least checked out the Martin house.
Although we are much too close to the notorious “Tornado Alley” in Moore, we had no storm damage at the end of March and my garden and shrubs survived that round.